Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Following Amazing Report Appeared Today. I Am Just Staggered!

This came up just a few hours ago.

DoHA confirms next round of PCEHR funding in negotiations

The third round of funding for the project will be allocated to the National e-Health Transition Authority (NeHTA) by November 2011

The Federal Department of Health has confirmed it is in negotiations for the third tranche of funding to be allocated to the National e-Health Transition Authority (NeHTA) for the $466.7 million Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record (PCEHR) project.

Speaking to Computerworld Australia, a spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Ageing (DoHA) said negotiations were progressing in line with the end of the previous stage with a new allocation to be made by November this year.

The spokeswoman could not comment on the exact amount of funds to be allocated to NeHTA, but said it would be dependent on contract deliverables and used to build upon the work completed so far.

The second round of funding received by NeHTA, $50.5 million for the period from May to October 2011, covered a number of areas including system architecture, detailed business requirements, security design, standard requirements and technical specifications. This followed the allocation of the initial $38.5 million to support the PCEHR project from November 2010 to April 2011.

“NeHTA is also acting as the Department’s managing agent in relation to the recently announced National Infrastructure, National Change and Adoption and Benefits Partners and the 12 lead implementation sites,” the spokeswoman said.

Lots more here:


Here is the earlier report for reference.

NEHTA receives next instalment of $466.7m e-health project

The funding of $38.5 million will assist the organisation in the next stage of its personally-controlled electronic health record (PCEHR) project

The National e-health Transition Authority (NEHTA) has confirmed it has received the latest tranche of a total of $466.7 million in funding from the Federal Department of Health for the next stage of its personally-controlled electronic health record (PCEHR) project.

According to a NEHTA spokesperson, funding of $38.5 million will be provided for a six month period to 30 June this year under which the organisation will provide management support services as private-sector partners are hired for four key roles: a national infrastructure partner; a change and adoption partner; a benefits realisation partner and an external assurance adviser.

Much more here


So what we have here is about $89M paid to NEHTA for their contribution to the PCEHR for the year to October, 2011.

All this seems just utterly over the top to me. That some of money could, for example, pay for 1 year for about 590 staff each being paid $150,000 p.a. What on earth were even ½ of this number of people actually doing?

We are also told above the funds were for “a number of areas including system architecture, detailed business requirements, security design, standard requirements and technical specifications”. Well the flash on this is that DoHA has bought a system, for the sake of speed of implementation, and so a good deal of this work will be out the window as it is just irrelevant to what Accenture is actually delivering.

An audit of just how this money has been spent is urgently required as,- on any reasonable look - the spend seems just profligate in the extreme.

What is even more amazing is that without any public accountability as to what has been delivered even more is to be spent!

I am happy to be shown it is and was all utterly reasonable, but really I find my credulability just a trifle stretched!

I look forward to someone explaining how a spend of this sort can be justified - given that the various Wave sites and provisioning contracts are all apparently funded directly from DoHA.



Anonymous said...

Ahh - you ain't seen nothin yet. Wait till they really start spending the money to buy all the platforms, servers and other hardware as the 'foundation' for the system and then the real software dollars will flow and added to that will be the extra dollars from the contingency fund needed to keep filling the black hole and bale everyone out of trouble. The bigger the project the bigger the spend. Lots of big projects and many big organisations means lots more money will be needed. Oh,and of course now that we have so much happening o such a grand scale more people will be needed in DOHA and NEHTA to keep tabs on it all. Plenty of jobs are now nicely secured to ride out troubled waters ahead. Busy, busy, busy people - so much to do and so few people to do it all - more people needed methinks.

Anonymous said...

When did the plan introduce centralised databases occur? The last few national strategy documents call for health information exchanges, not for a UK style centralised system. And yet, despite all the bleating that they are not doing this, that is indeed what they are building. Is it not obvious that this is a technical and political disaster? I can't see Australians happy with their 'summary' information being in government hands. We are already hearing the first shots in this unneeded battle being fired from the privacy benches. Maybe all the remaining PCEHR funds are earmarked for lawyers?

Anonymous said...

Don't the States contribute 50 percent?

How much do the States have to contribute?

Aren't they still supporting NEHTA?

Dr David More MB PhD FACHI said...

As far as I know DoHA is funding the PCEHR and the States have nothing to do with it. Some States are pretty unhappy about expectations for them to contribute for the PCEHR - SA and Vic at least.